SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) -- Gov. Jerry Brown has approved reducing the maximum penalty for a misdemeanor by one day, a move that will significantly reduce the number of legal immigrants who can be deported for lesser crimes.
Federal law lets legal immigrants be deported if they are given a sentence of one year or more. But California law defines misdemeanors as crimes qualifying for jail terms of a year or less.
SB1310, signed into law by Brown on Monday, reduces the maximum penalty for misdemeanors to 364 days to conform to the federal law.
Advocates project the one-day change could affect thousands of immigrants in California.
There was no organized opposition to the bill by Democratic Sen. Ricardo Lara of Bell Gardens.